Release Day Review: Quenched in Blood By Ari McKay

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/quenched-in-blood-by-ari-mckay-9984-b

Blurb

Asheville Arcana
Will love mean rebirth… or death?
In the course of his work with the Asheville Paranormal Council, reclusive three-hundred-year-old vampire Julian Schaden discovers young Thomas Carter, the heir to a long line of demon hunters—a legacy Thomas knows nothing about.
He also knows nothing about the supernatural world or the danger he’s in. As Julian convinces him and later agrees to train Thomas to use his abilities, he struggles against unexpected feelings. Thomas is too young and innocent to become involved with Julian, but opposites attract, and this is one battle Julian is fated to lose….
Julian and Thomas grow closer as the demonic menace advances. A prophecy from a dying mage comes with a bleak warning: to save Thomas’s life, Julian might have to give up the only man he’s ever loved.

Review

This is an amazing series. It’s really rich and full of tremendous world building with lively and engaging characters and a bad guy really worth going after.

I loved the relationship building here – I felt like it went at a great pace and kept me interested without rushing it.

Of course the virgin aspect mixed with the “slut” as partner was really hot! But it was also really tender and Julian did a lot of growing along side Thomas.

The action/adventure was just enough without overwhelming the romance.

Overall I think this was excellent and I highly recommend it to any fan of the author, the series, paranormal romance and fantasy. I do think this is best read in order but you could muddle though if you really don’t want to.

5 of 5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Recently Released: Fae on a Roll (Kontra’s Menagerie #25) by Charlie Richards

Good Reads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42092323-fae-on-a-roll?ac=1&from_search=true

Blurb

On the Road: When a serious fae warrior stumbles across his soul-mate in a fun-loving, paralyzed human, he discovers the hardest task in his life is learning how to connect.

Prudhoe Rison is a specially trained fae enforcer and had been sent to the human realm to search for a missing prince. After completing that task, he should have returned home, but feeling a pull to stay, he’s remained for several weeks. Wandering the town to discover the source of the sensation has proven fruitless…until he drives past the library. The pull he’s been feeling intensifies, and he follows it into the building. There he meets Korvyn Peruke—his paramour—the other half of his soul. Prudhoe is drawn to Korvyn’s friendly disposition and outgoing personality. Even though the human is wheelchair-bound, it doesn’t stop Korvyn from enjoying life.

At first, Korvyn doesn’t understand why the serious and handsome Prudhoe is taking an interest in him—until he puts two and two together. A visit from a fae enforcer alerts Prudhoe that people in his own realm are talking about him. It also tells Korvyn—who already knows about paranormals—that Prudhoe is something other. Can Prudhoe keep Korvyn safe when trouble from the fae realm comes calling, or will he have to make the ultimate sacrifice to keep Korvyn safe?

Review

While helping rescue a fae prince, enforcer Prudhoe senses his paramour (mate) in the area. After completing his mission he stays in the area searching for him. He eventually finds Korvyn working in the local library. Korvyn can tell that there is something different about Prudhoe and having grown up knowing about shifters and paranormals he is more open to the concept of fated mates.

Sadly, this story didn’t have much of a storyline. There was promise of a good action or confrontation scene when Prudhoe’s brother shows up to make trouble, but it ended up being a pretty lackluster scene. The ending was very abrupt and unsatisfying. I’ve been a big fan of this whole series therefore I am used to the quick ending stories Charlie usually writes but sadly this one falls really short.

2.5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

 

 

Release Day Review: Undertow (Port Lewis Witches #2) by Brooklyn Ray

release day review

Nine Star Presents
https://ninestarpress.com/product/undertow/

Blurb

Port Lewis, a coastal town perched on the Washington cliffs, is home to Crescent Cafe, a slew of micro-breweries, a downtown packed with antique boutiques, and violent, ancient storms. Thunder shakes rooftops and lightning cuts through dark skies, but Liam Montgomery has never been afraid.

Until now.

One night, Liam hears the scream of a kelpie, a Water horse whose cry foretells the beginning of a prophecy. Kelpies have not set foot on shore for decades, but as Liam digs into his magic and his family’s history, he uncovers a mysterious secret that could ripple into the lives of everyone around him.

Liam’s tea-leaves spells out murder. The life of someone he loves is on the line. An unwelcome kelpie speaks in riddles. The Queen of Water demands a sacrifice.

The Montgomery name is soaked in blood and secrets. Liam’s fate is sealed, but he’ll do whatever it takes to change it—even if it risks his circle, his magic, and his life.

Review

This shouldn’t be a book that I even want to read and yet I not only couldn’t wait to read it, I loved it! Super loved it!

It’s sooooo well-written. The descriptions are absolutely breath taking without being over done or feeling disproportionate to the story. Though this is new adult/young adult, in book two things take a decidedly more heated turn and the chemistry between Liam and Ryder is scorching! And yet the sex itself isn’t so over described that your own imagination isn’t required. It’s a wonderful gift to be able to describe things in such a way as to be specific but vague enough as to leave room for imagination.

The magic in this book is also off the charts. Wow. Not only do Liam and Ryder explore their powers with one another but there is something new in town after Liam and Liam has to use his powers to protect himself and Ryder.

There is a lot of new information revealed in this story and I can’t wait to read the next installment. This is in no way an ending but it still felt very satisfying. I think, if I have to directly compare, that this is even BETTER than book 1, which – let’s face it – rarely happens – but it sure seemed to here!

Highly recommended! (not a standalone)

5 of 5 stars


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Release Day Review: Be Fairy Game (Starfig investigation #2) by Meghan Maslow

release day review

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41003166-be-fairy-game?from_search=true

Blurb
When a simple ‘find & fetch’ case throws private investigator Twig Starfig and newly-minted wizard, Quinn Broomsparkle, into the middle of an EBI murder investigation, it’s just another day in the Elder Realm.

If murder were Twig’s only problem, he’d be the luckiest half-dragon in the land. Murder he can handle. Fulfilling his promise to his scheming, power-hungry father to run for a seat on Lighthelm’s city council? Meh, he’d rather face a demon with a toothache.

On top of their case going sideways, and Twig running for a council seat he really doesn’t want, Twig and Quinn are forced to face some unpleasant realities about their budding romance, while still learning how to handle the wizard-familiar bond they now share. Throw in a red fury with abysmal taste in boyfriends, a ghost pirate-parrot who drinks too much, a murderer who will stop at nothing to get what they want, a host of new friends and enemies, and you’ve got a situation where no one is safe and everyone is Fairy Game

Review
This book carries on from the end of the first book, By Fairy means or Foul. In my opinion you do need to read (or listen the audiobook book is great) to book 1. I’d forgotten how much I love these characters, and I do mean Characters. Twig is a dragon shifter, Quinn a Wizard and Bill the daemon Red Fury (he’s my favourite). In this book we have a murder mystery, political intrigue and family drama. There is so much going on in the story. It keeps quite a pace without losing it’s integrity. Meghan Maslow has built a wonderful world which just keeps on getting better with each book. There are a lot of new characters with their own quirky ways that make it so fun to read. As well as ones from the first book. Twig and Quinn’s complicated relationship is continuing to build, Twig is Quinn’s familiar and in this story they struggle with whether to mate or not. Such a difficult situation when you’re already bound together in a different way. The murder mystery is handled quite well. Kept me guessing, and I like that about it. Someone is also trying to kill Twig’s father (who I’ve slowly warmed to). That looks like one of the threads that will carry on to book 3, because for me there are too many loose ends for the series not to carry on. I do hope this story comes out on audiobook as well.

4 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Recent Release: The Werewolf’s Fae Mate by Liv Rider

Good Reads Link
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40109446-the-werewolf-s-fae-mate?from_search=true

Blurb

He never expected his mate to be fae. Now he has to choose between his heart and his pack.

When mixed-blood werewolf Mahon comes across powerful fae magic in a nightclub, dealing with the threat is a chance to prove to his new pack where his loyalties lie. But the threat turns out to be a gorgeous, wide-eyed college student who’s never heard of the supernatural world. After they’re attacked by bloodsucking vampire bats, he takes Oscar and his small, angry cat home for their own protection. He’ll definitely tell his pack about Oscar…later.

Abandoned as an infant, Oscar’s always wondered where he came from—he just never expected the answer to include pointy ears, magical powers, and evil forces trying to kill him. Oscar knows he shouldn’t rely on Mahon for help, but it’s hard to resist when a six-foot-six werewolf literally sweeps you off your feet. The key to Oscar’s past might lie with the local fae court—where werewolves aren’t welcome.

Oscar and Mahon are mates—but how can they be together when it might cost them both everything?

The Werewolf’s Fae Mate is an m/m paranormal werewolf/fae romance with a HEA and no cliffhangers.

Review

I am LOVING this author! I have been devouring the books on her back list and enjoying the hell out of ‘em!

In this case we get two mates from different species and all the headaches that entails. Coupled with that we get some political family drama and some sweet lovin’.

In addition to the whole “Mate/Mine” thing we get one of my favorite all time tropes – what I have re-dubbed the “harry potter” trope. That is when a mere mortal finds out they are really MAGIC! I love that and Oscar gets the hard crash landing in the land of paranormal as well as finding out his own back story.

I’m hoping the author does more in this world – hopefully a bit longer – and that we get to see more of this couple.

4 of 5 stars

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Copy Purchased for Review

Release Day Review: Nudging Fate by E.J. Russell

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/nudging-fate-by-ej-russell-9553-b

Blurb

An Enchanted Occasions Story
Not exactly a match made in Valhalla.
Half-norn event planner Anders Skuldsson is under strict orders from Asgard not to meddle with Fate. But with Enchanted Occasions’ latest booking—a competition for the hand of Faerie’s one true prince—crashing around his ears, it’s really difficult to toe that particular line. But if Andy pretends to be a contender for the prince…. It’s only temporary, so Odin can’t blame him. Right?
Conall of Odstone’s half-brother, Prince Reyner, was supposed to choose a mate before being crowned and wed. But the idiot left Con to impersonate him. Again.
When Con meets Andy, his anger turns to desire… and despair. Even if Andy forgives him for his imposture, how could someone eligible for a prince’s hand settle for the court outcast? And the double-deception isn’t their only obstacle. Unless Andy makes the right choice, their fates could be sealed by…well… Fate.

Review

This is a wonderful case of two hidden identities and the not-as-predictable outcome as you might think! I thought this was fun, sweet, a bit sexy and very enjoyable.

The trope is a combo Cinderella/Cyrano and it really worked! I didn’t love the chemistry between these guys as much as some of Russell’s others characters, but they still had some sizzle.

Where the author excels is her world building and her characterizations – I didn’t see big plot holes and I thought the secondary characters really added (without overshadowing the MCs) to the story.

If you like fantasy, fairy tales and secret plot twists – this is for you!

4.5 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Audiobook: Ante Up by Kim Fielding Narrated by Andrew McFerrin

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/ante-up-by-kim-fielding-8952-b

Blurb

Love is a high-stakes game.

A century and a half ago, Ante Novak died on a Croatian battlefield—and rose three days later as a vampire. Now he haunts Las Vegas, stealing blood and money from drunken gamblers and staying on the fringe of the powerful vampire organization known as the Shadows. His existence feels empty and meaningless until he meets beautiful Peter Gehrardi, who can influence others with his thoughts.

An attraction flares instantly, bringing a semblance of life to Ante’s dead heart. But the Shadows want Peter too, and they’re willing to kill to get him. As Ante and Peter flee, they learn more about themselves and each other, and they discover that the world is a stranger place than either of them imagined. With enemies at their heels and old mistakes coming back to exact a price, how can Ante and Peter find sanctuary?

Review

(Book reviewed here previously)

I’m a huge Kim Fielding fan and I’ve really been enjoying these Dreamspun books so I was really looking forward to this.

I think that if I hadn’t had such high expectations for a story from this author – I know what amazing things she can do – I would have given this more stars. But… and maybe this is unfair – I didn’t resonate with this like I have so many of her other stories.

On the one hand it was pretty interesting and fairly light, the two MCs are not exactly what you’d expect – which is refreshing. On the other hand I wasn’t really ever bowled over by their chemistry and I was a bit disappointed by the ending.

However – if you’re in the mood for a paranormal story written by an excellent author with a somewhat unique twist on the trope – give this is a try – you won’t be disappointed!

3.5 of 5 stars

Audio

Here is another example of where a great narrator can absolutely elevate a story to the next level. I admit that I was surprised I hadn’t loved this before – Kim Fielding is a writing Goddess! – but it hadn’t struck the right notes with me. However, the narrator – Andrew McFerrin – did an amazing job! He gave everyone unique voices that absolutely suited them perfectly (I LOVED Ante and never realized you pronounce it Aunty…) and thought his depiction of Peter was fantastic!

He gave us just the right amount of emotion and angst and humor to make this a really gripping listen.

Highly recommended!

5 of 5 stars

Overall
4.5 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Blood Legacy Series by Susi Hawke

GoodReads Link to Series

https://www.goodreads.com/search?q=susi+hawke+blood

Alpha’s Dream (The Blood Legacy Chronicle #1)

Blurb

Ages ago, the gods locked away a dangerous, powerful people… but the seal has been broken…
Clark, a bear descended from one of the original omega lines, has always known Kent was destined to be his mate, thanks to his visions. Clark’s ability to see past, present, and future is powerful, but even he can’t see a straight line out of the dark days ahead of them.
Kent, a descendant of the original alphas, has seen Clark in his dreams since they were children. He’s been yearning for the day when he can finally touch his mate and not just walk in his dreams.
After the sparks fly between them and they unwittingly break an eons old treaty, the powerful couple must trust each other’s gifts and a motley crew of shifters to save their new family… all while Clark is pregnant with triplets.
This book is 33k and pretty much guaranteed to have an HEA. 18+ readers only please! And yes, this book contains M/PREG, and adults adulting in sexy “knotty” ways. It also contains way more than the occasional use of potty mouth language!
Caution: possible trigger for a brief scene of an interrupted sexual assault and violence against the would be attackers.

 

Review

I love a good mpreg story! This is a new series by an author that I’ve recently been really enjoying! The first thing you have to do is ignore the whole Clark Kent, Peter Parker thing… it doesn’t mean anything except the families have known each other so they named their children that way and though it seems weird, the couples end up together with the names matching.

I don’t think there is anything “ground breaking” in this series, but the blood legacy thing is kind of interesting and finding the other shifters from the original families is interesting. If you enjoyed the original series – https://www.goodreads.com/series/217322 – this is a spinoff and is very similar.

3.5 of 5 stars

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Omega Found: An MM Mpreg Romance (The Blood Legacy Chronicle #2) 

Blurb

Ages ago, the gods locked away a dangerous, powerful people… but the seal has been broken
Heath is a human… or is he? Rescued from a horrible fate by the group of legacy descendants, he needs to embrace his inner beast in order to deal with the fate the gods have for him. But first, he has to accept the fact that he might not be exactly human. The halfling omega’s legacy gift is the ability to see auras, and none shines brighter than that of certain little Irish alpha.
Sean is a charming Irish fox shifter with a definite talent for pure blarney. His legacy gift is prophesy, but he hasn’t been told whether his fated mate will ever embrace his hidden shifter side. He stands a head shorter than Heath, but has more than enough cocky charm to make up for any height difference.
Sparks fly between the shy, halfling omega and the gregarious alpha, and they find themselves dealing with issues from the halfling’s past while trying to build a future of their own… if they can just figure out what shifter animal Heath has hiding inside him.
This is the second book of The Blood Legacy Chronicles, and should be read in order of release for maximum enjoyment. This book is 25k and pretty much guaranteed to have an HEA. 18+ readers only please! And yes, this book contains M/PREG, and adults adulting in naughty, knotty ways. It also contains way more than the occasional use of potty mouth language!

 

Review

This is my favorite so far – probably because Sean is so adorable! – and there is no weird name system. The alpha is small and the omega big, but they still fall into traditional roles. The mom is hysterical!

3.5 of 5 stars

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Omega’s Destiny: An MM Mpreg Romance (The Blood Legacy Chronicles Book 3) 

Blurb

Ages ago, the gods locked away a dangerous, powerful people… but the seal has been broken

Jaguar alpha Peter is a self-professed manwhore. After he’s caught fooling around with brother-in-law’s twin brother after their friend’s wedding, the two of them do the only thing they can…

Parker is a muscular bear omega enjoying a little fling with his buddy, until he gets called out for being an omega slut in front of everyone by his irate twin, a seer who knows damn well that these two knuckleheads are fated mates but can’t tell them until they discover it for themselves. Storming out with the sexy manwhore in tow seems like the best solution, right?

Sparks fly when their fling becomes something more than either one of them ever expected. When a visit to the phoenix finds Parker entrusted with a precious gift that is the key to possibly fixing the crack in a powerful portal to the fae realm, the duo needs a little help from their ragtag group of psychic friends to complete their mission.

This is the third book of The Blood Legacy Chronicles, and should be read in order of release for maximum enjoyment. This book about 30k and pretty much guaranteed to have an HEA. 18+ readers only please! And yes, this book contains Mpreg, and adults adulting in naughty, knotty ways. It also contains way more than the occasional use of potty mouth language!

 

Review

I didn’t like this as much as the previous two, but it’s still pretty funny and moves the story forward well. I just didn’t like the dynamic between Peter and Parker and their names bugged me more for some reason…

 

2.75 (rounded to 3) of 5 stars

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Copies Purchased for Review

Holidays: The Holly Groweth Green (2017 Advent Calendar Daily – Stocking Stuffers) by Amy Rae Durreson

 

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/2017-advent-calendar-daily-delivery-package-stocking-stuffers-9042-b

Blurb

When wounded doctor Laurence Payne is stranded in the snowy English countryside on Christmas Eve, 1946, he is surprised to stumble upon Mistle Cottage and its mysterious inhabitant. Avery claims to be an Elizabethan wizard, and Laurence struggles to explain away the atmosphere of the cottage as mere coincidence and trickery. He spends a magical twelve days of Christmas celebrating with Avery, but then wakes to find his lover has vanished and the cottage has fallen to ruin overnight.

Laurence’s investigations lead him to the story of an ancient fairy curse—Avery is doomed to spend only Christmas Eve to Twelfth Night in human form until he finds true love. Laurence sets out to give Avery the greatest gift of all—his heart and with it the chance to live for more than the fleeting winter weeks he’s been sentenced to.

Review

This is a very well written, well developed, mix between an historical and fantasy romance. Quite unique! It’s very British as well, and the secondary characters are great!

I really felt immersed in the time period as well as the country.

I’d have given this 5 stars if there’d been a bit more chemistry between our MCs – they felt more thrown together out of necessity rather than combustible desire – but it fit the times.

I loved how pragmatic they were about Laurence’s injury and how they problem solved to work around it!

Thoroughly enjoyable!

4 of 5 stars

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Audiobook: Finder’s Keeper (A Heart’s Gate Story #1) by Shira Anthony Narrated by Kenneth Obi

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/finders-keeper-by-shira-anthony-8812-b

Blurb

When Zane moves into an old gothic brownstone, he discovers the house comes equipped with a caretaker—Kit, who lives in the basement. Zane is immediately drawn to the charming and attractive Kit. But Kit is much more than he seems. He is a two-hundred-year-old half-human, half–red fox spirit who guards a Gate between the mortal and spirit worlds—a fact Zane should recognize, but doesn’t.

Orphaned at a young age, Zane never learned he comes from a long line of mystical Keepers. Kit needs Zane’s help to protect the Gate, but how can he tell Zane of his legacy when that will crush Zane’s dreams of traveling the world? If he takes up the mantle, Zane will be bound to the Gate, unable to leave it. But when Zane realizes Kit’s true nature, and his own, he’ll have to make a choice—fight to protect Kit and the Gate, or deny his destiny and any chance of a future with Kit.

Review
(Book reviewed here previously)

This was really, really, really good.

I’m a sucker for a lot of magic and make believe in my science fiction and this has it in spades! First, we have the magic holder who doesn’t know how special he is, then we find out his mentor is another “undervalued” magic holder and the situation seems to unmanageable but with only a bit of imagination – it’s all managed!

The world building is fantastic and I hope we get to see more from this world as there was so much time spent creating it. We also get to meet a lot of interesting people and I hope to re-visit them in the future as well.

The chemistry is very sweet between Kit and Zane and while I wasn’t always super keen on all the tails, for the most part, it really works!

Highly enjoyable fated mate romance with a lot of great world-building and creativity!

5 of 5 stars

Audio

Kenneth Obi is a new to me narrator and he does a pretty good job. That’s what I kept thinking as I was listening to this audiobook. He does a nice enough job, but there was SO MUCH he could have done that I was a bit disappointed with the relative lack of drama. The voices he chose for Kit and Zane were opposite of how I’d pictured them and that kept me off balance for a bit as well.

He nicely differentiates all the many characters and he does give them unique voices, but he didn’t do as much as he could have with all the wildly creative members of this cast.

It was a nice way to enjoy the story however and recommended overall.

4 of 5 stars

Overall 4.5 of 5 stars

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